Even though smartphones are getting thinner and lighter, they’re still becoming more durable. Unlike early smartphones, today’s phones are typically tested to ensure their longevity, and technology is constantly evolving to make phones easier to use and less likely to become damaged through typical use. However, it’s still worth taking a few basic steps to prevent possible problems with your phone. Here are a few guidelines for avoiding common problems with smartphones and other smart devices.
Consider a Case
Cases add a bit of bulk to smartphones, but this extra size and weight provides protection against drops. Although a case won’t ensure you avoid a cracked screen or other damage, they do provide a bit of robustness that can mean the difference between an intact phone and a broken one. Not all cases are the same. If you have a history of dropping your phone, it might be worth investing in a more rugged case. If you’d prefer to preserve your phones look, consider a case that only covers the sides and not the back. As phones continue to become thinner, many people are finding they prefer a thicker device than is available on the market. Cases can provide a better feel for many people, and textured cases can help prevent your phone from slipping during long conversations.
Learn What Causes Scratches
Glass is a surprisingly hard material, and only harder materials can cause scratches. Metal, no matter how sharp, won’t scratch a smartphone’s screen, so don’t worry too much about car keys or other metal items causing scratches. One of the most common causes of smartphone scratches is sand, which can be harder than the glass on a phone’s screen. Wipe your phone screen gently, as wiping away sand or other small materials too harshly can lead to scratching. If you typically carry your smartphone in a purse or backpack, consider picking up a case that covers the screen to avoid scratching.
Updates Are Important
Smartphones are computers, and they need to be maintained like any other computer. Make sure to run security updates promptly, as failing to do so can leave your phone vulnerable to hacks, potentially compromising your information. App updates are important as well, as vulnerabilities in programs you run can lead to problems as well. If updates fail for any reason, make sure to talk with experts to find out how to resolve the issue.
Take Care of Your Battery
Modern smartphones are designed to maximize the life of batteries, but there are steps you can take to prevent premature wear. Try to avoid letting your battery drain completely, as doing so can shorten its lifespan; developing a habit of plugging in your phone every morning or evening can help keep it topped off. However, experts also advise against leaving your phone plugged in once its completely charged. Letting your battery drain a bit helps keep it functioning optimally. Note, however, that batteries inevitably lose their capacity, so consider picking a phone with a replaceable battery if you plan on using it for the long term.
Keep Your Phone Dry
Many phones on the market are advertised as being water resistant, and many that don’t advertise that feature can still function after being submerged in water. However, it’s still best to keep your phone dry whenever possible. Small cracks can make a water-resistant phone vulnerable to water damage. Furthermore, saltwater can still build up on a phone, potentially causing scratching and other issues. If your phone stops working after being submerged, give it time to dry completely before trying to power it on again. Note that the rice trick, which involves placing your phone in a container of rice, isn’t advised by most experts. It has little effect on drying out your phone, and small rice particles can become embedded in your phone. Silica gel packets, on the other hand, can safely speed up the drying process.
Be Wary of Non-Standard Apps
Android phones can be set to sideload apps, which lets you run programs not installed via the official store. Furthermore, third-party stores are common as well. Some people jailbreak their iPhones, which lets them run programs not found in the App Store. If you’re interested in running such apps, be careful, as malware is a growing problem with smartphones. These apps can sometimes capture information covertly, which can lead to identity theft and other problems. People often use their phones for banking and other critical tasks, so ensure any third-party app you install comes from a trusted source, such as Amazon or other established companies.
Avoid Temperature Extremes
Extreme temperatures can have a number of effects on smartphones. Hot and cold temperatures can shorten a battery’s lifespan, and phone screens and other parts sometimes fail to work properly in especially hot or cold temperatures. While those who live in hot or cold regions have little choice when it comes to smartphone temperatures, avoiding keeping a phone in a car when the temperature is hot can help you avoid issues. It’s generally best to keep your phone indoors as much as possible, especially if rain or snow is likely.
Streamline Your Apps
Today’s smartphones are often able to store a seemingly unlimited number of apps, but uninstalling apps to save space can be wise even if you have plenty of room left. Phone storage components wear down over time, and smartphones can spread information across the storage space to slow this degradation. Freeing up space offers more room for this process. Furthermore, uninstalling apps helps keep you interface from becoming cluttered, helping you find apps more quickly. Some apps run in the background, which can cost you bandwidth and lead to poorer performance. If you haven’t used an app in an extended period of time, think about if you’re likely to use it again in the future.
Smartphones are better than ever, and they’ll continue evolving over time. Although devices are more rugged and durable than ever before, a bit of caution and maintenance can go a long way toward ensuring your phone lasts as long as possible.
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